One of the most precious moments with my daughter.
She tilted her face skyward and closed her eyes. The blizzard-like snow fell on all parts of her face simultaneously. She was feeling each snowflake as it tingled her skin and then started to melt.
Her leggings were soaked and her mittens were covered in a combination of snow, slush and ice. If she could see her legs they would be beat red, just like her cheeks.
She felt none of these discomforts as she stood atop “The Hill.” She had lost count as to how many times she had walked up that hill with her Dad this afternoon as the blizzard-like snow fell.
She lowered her head, slowly opened her eyes, and she saw her Dad on his stomach again. He was lying on his sled, the one his dad (grandpa) had given him for his tenth birthday. Although there were several other families sledding, their sled looked more like an antique or something from a museum. Some of the other children, holding red plastic discs, had asked them what it was.
He explained what a Flexible Flyer sled was to all who asked.
She thought he was the smartest and funniest person in the universe.
So, her Dad lay on his stomach, one with his sled, poised at the top of “The Hill,” his hands on the wooden steering arm.
“Come on baby, one more time, it’s almost dark.….” He said.
She leaned down towards her right side and put both of her hands on the small of his back and pushed as hard as she could. She leapt onto his back just as the sled’s blades began to tilt downward and down they went, her tiny arms tucked tightly under his chest. As she had done each time, she turned her head to the right and closed her eyes. Her stomach leapt with excited butterflies as they raced at break-neck speed. Each ride seemed to last forever.
At the bottom he rolled to his left and she rolled off of him and tumbled into the deep fresh snow. That was her favorite part.
He was suddenly standing above her, his left hand extended, and the sled’s rope in his right.
They walked hand in hand to the car just as twilight was settling in, his childhood sled following close behind.
They sang Christmas carols all the way home.